Subject Area: Scandinavia

A Comparative Survey of Suicide: Scandinavia, Asia, Africa, and the United States
Edgerton, Robert B.
2009 0-7734-4781-4 80 pages
This anthropological study examines cultural attitudes and public policies around the world toward suicide.

A Translation of Þorskfirðinga (gull Þóris) saga
Cardew, Philip
2000 0-7734-7795-0 208 pages
This volume provides an opportunity for individuals to gain access to an Old Icelandic saga which has, otherwise, received little scholarly attention. It has only come to the notice of scholars, up till now, by virtue of its inclusion of a possible ‘Bear’s son folk-tale’ analogue. While this feature of the narrative is dealt with in the introduction to this translation, the saga also has other interesting features. It was written down toward the end of the period of saga writing (ca. AD 1400) and is found in only one medieval vellum manuscript. It reveals itself as a narrative deriving from a set of complex forces at work in the late Middle Ages, forces which are as literary as political or historical. This translation and critical introduction will enable analysis to be undertaken by those whose linguistic competences do not include Old Icelandic.

Analyzing Ten Poems from the Poetic Edda: Oral Formula and Mythic Patterns
Mellor, Scott A.
2008 0-7734-4856-X 348 pages
This work investigates the syntax of ten poems from the Poetic Edda, a medieval Icelandic text, offering data that reveals some of the composition processes and the remnants of the oral tradition from which poetry came. This work demonstrates that the Icelandic poet not only employed verbatim and variable formulae when composing, but also that the structure of the half-lines are formulaic and that their semantic function aids a poet in composition.

Evaluating the Achievement of One Hundred Years of Scandinavian Cinema: Dreyer, Bergman, Von Trier, and Others
Tucker, John
2012 0-7734-2595-0 480 pages
This collection of twelve articles and one interview probes the historical evolution and cultural diversity of cinema from the Nordic countries: Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. The studies variously address cinematic schools and national traditions on one hand or individual films or filmmakers on the other. Cinematic modernism, censorship, and globalization are among the themes explored; the collection also addresses the aesthetic, moral, and social preoccupations of the great northern filmmakers from revered figures like Carl Th. Dreyer and Ingmar Bergman, to iconoclast contemporaries like Lars Von Trier, Roy Andersson and Aki Kaurismäki. The authors, all specialists in the field, include both emerging and established voices. Together their multiple perspectives provide a fresh and comprehensive consideration of an influential and admired cinematic tradition.

How the Beowulf Poet Employs Biblical Typology: His Christian Portrayal of Heroism
Helder, William
2014 0-7734-4241-3 288 pages
This study is an attempt to consider Beowulf in its literary context. It shows how the typological perspective manifests itself throughout Beowulf in its structure and its imagery and so aims to foster an increased awareness of the rich allusiveness of its metaphorical language.

The Education of a Self-Made Woman: Fredrika Bremer, 1801-1865
Stendahl, Brita
1994 0-7734-9098-1 240 pages
Far ahead of their time, Bremer's novels (first published in Sweden starting in 1831) were intelligent, clever, and strikingly well-informed in matters concerning women. They were translated and sold many editions. Her aim was not just to entertain, but to educate. She took positions on political questions, started social projects, and chided the church for its political conservatism and theological rigidity. She needled the government to change its laws. Reaching beyond Europe, she travelled two years in America, then wrote her classic The Homes of the New World. She met such notables as Emerson and Dakotah Chief Gray Iron. In this detailed biography by noted Swedish scholar Brita K. Stendahl, Fredrika Bremer emerges as both forthright and enigmatic. It catches her fascinating combination of the courage to witness and agitate for change as well as her desire for privacy and meditation.

The Function of the Living Dead in Medieval Norse and Celtic Literature: Death and Desire
Smith, Gregg A
2007 0-7734-5353-9 196 pages
Examines the nature and function of the dead in medieval Norse and Celtic literature. It is demonstrated that agents of the living dead in these literatures have a functional and formulaic role, largely manifested as a process of wish-fulfillment. While the authors of these stories provide resonances of past beliefs regarding the dead, they also appear to have adapted these ideas for their own purposes in order to involve the dead as role-players in their stories. This book contains 11 color photographs.

The Poetic Edda: Translated by Henry Adams Belows, with an Introduction and foreword by William O. Cord
Bellows, Henry
1991 0-88946-783-8 470 pages
A reprint of the classic 1923 Bellows translation. A superb text and an essential source for Scandinavian mythology.

The Post-Classical Icelandic Family Saga
Arnold, Martin
2003 0-7734-6804-8 296 pages
This book aims to establish theoretical principles for analyzing the group of late 13th- and 14th- century Íslendingasögur (Icelandic family sagas) traditionally designated as post-classical. Two periods of Icelandic history are examined. First, the medieval period is examined in terms of the cultural background to the production of the Íslendingasögur. Secondly, the 19th and early 20th centuries are examined in terms of the development of medieval Icelandic studies and the rise of an Icelandic nationalist movement. Both periods are interpreted as times when the dominant ideological forces were characterized by a form of National Romanticism.

The Scandinavian Magic Tale and Narrative Folklore: A Study in Genres, Themes, and Sources
Ingwersen, Niels
2008 0-7734-4983-3 264 pages
Demonstrates that Scandinavian folklore has a range comparable to Shakespearean drama.

The Theory of Culture of Folklorist Lauri Honko, 1932-2002: The Ecology of Tradition
Kamppinen, Matti
2013 0-7734-4543-9 132 pages
Lauri Honko (1932-2002), the Finnish professor of folkloristics and comparative religion was a prolific and multitalented researcher, whose topics of research ranged from the study of folk beliefs, folk medicine and Ingrian laments to the general theories of culture, identity and meaning. He studied Finno-Ugric mythologies, Karelian and Tanzanian folk healing, and South Indian oral traditions. In this book we aim at explicating and analyzing his methodological assumptions as well as his specific theoretical contributions in the study of religion and folklore. Our central focus is on Honko’s tradition ecology, an approach to cultural systems that exposes their dynamic and functionalistic features. We compare and contrast tradition ecology with other theories in religious studies and folkloristics, especially with those theories that stem from the evolutionary and cognitive paradigms. Furthermore, we will explicate Honko’s programmatic model of the folklore process, by means of which the dynamics of religions and folklore can be conceptually captured. We argue that Honko constructed a coherent theory of culture, where functionalism played a central role. Furthermore, we argue that in Honko’s theory, religious studies needs methodological support from folkloristics as well as from other fields of cultural studies.